Blog Posts and Articles

Nicholas Alahverdian uncovers 1,450% increase in child deaths or near-deaths since Gina Raimondo elected

DCYF expert releases statement on foster child deaths during the first 3 years of the tenure of Governor Gina Raimondo

MORE CHILDREN IN DCYF CARE HAVE DIED UNDER SPEAKER MATTIELLO AND GOVERNOR RAIMONDO THAN ANY OTHER SPEAKER AND GOVERNOR COMBINED

Nicholas Alahverdian uncovers 1,450% increase in child deaths or near-deaths since Gina Raimondo was inaugurated

PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
OCTOBER 18, 2018

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (nicholasalahverdian.com) — Harvard scholar and DCYF reform activist Nicholas Alahverdian unleashed a fierce warning to the people of Rhode Island today after discovering that more children in the care of the Rhode Island Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) have been killed or nearly killed since Governor Gina Raimondo and Speaker Nicholas Mattiello have risen to power in state government. 

Gina Raimondo
Gov. Gina Raimondo has turned a blind eye to the chaos at DCYF

The report is released by the Office of Nicholas Alahverdian in conjunction with a video detailing the failures of Raimondo and Mattiello which can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MiM09Hic0RI

“What we have found,” said Nicholas Alahverdian, “Through diving into everything from Providence Journal archives to FOIA requests, is that children in DCYF care are more at risk than ever. This is an election year and I take no ignominy in stating the obvious: Gina Raimondo and Nicholas Mattiello have not — though executive order or legislation — done anything to substantially curve this dangerous trend of dead or nearly-dead DCYF kids.”

Nicholas Alahverdian, Gina Raimondo
Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo

“Gina Raimondo and Nicholas Mattiello have blood on their hands,” Nicholas Alahverdian continued. “One of the last times a child died in state care was the case of Thomas Wright, under the administration of former Governor Donald Carcieri. Coincidentally, I had the same social worker as little T.J. Wright — and while he was being killed in Woonsocket, I was being tortured and raped in Florida — all in the month of October 2004. Poor Patricia Chabot was so overburdened with a high rate of cases that she had one kid being tortured and raped and another ending up dead — all in one month. This practice continues unabated to this day under the Raimondo administration — except it is literally and exactly 1,450% worse.”

Nicholas Alahverdian, Nicholas Mattiello
Nicholas Mattiello, Speaker of the House

As the 2018 election draws near, it is important to highlight the records of the incumbents. “We have had over 30 deaths or near-deaths in the past 3 and a half years,” said Nicholas Alahverdian. “Gina Raimondo, in her ubiquitous blasé tone, has dismissed DCYF issues as ‘longstanding.’ While these issues are longstanding, these dead kids are 8 and 9 years old. They are not given a fair chance at life.”

Turning to the situation of Speaker Nicholas Mattiello, Alahverdian was considerably infuriated: “Over 50% of the House Chamber supported an omnibus bill and individual bills to overhaul DCYF. Not one bill — bills which were introduced year after year — made it out of committee. Not one. Nicholas Mattiello’s legal counsel and members of the Joint Committee on Legislative Services worked to actively inhibit any legislation that would improve or overhaul DCYF. Vicariously, Nicholas Mattiello is jointly responsible for the deaths and abuse suffered by children in DCYF care.” 

Nicholas Alahverdian, Harvard
Harvard scholar Nicholas Alahverdian

The study, conducted by Nicholas Alahverdian and his team of researchers, found that within the past three gubernatorial administrations, there has been a stark increase in DCYF child deaths since Raimondo became Governor. “In 2008, DCYF investigated reports of the death of a child in their care. In 2003, we saw the tragic death of T.J. Wright. Within a five year timespan, we had two investigations of DCYF-related deaths,” said Alahverdian. In the Chafee administration from 2011 to 2015, there were no child deaths. Yet under Gina Raimondo, we as a state have to take a seat and say to ourselves ‘within 4 years there have been over 30 deaths or near-deaths’” 

“It’s unconscionable,” said Alahverdian. “We have dead Rhode Island kids while Raimondo mingles in glitzy ballrooms raising funds for her campaign — policies which, by practice, include the disregard of DCYF-related killings.” 

Mike Chippendale, Nicholas Alahverdian, Doreen Costa, DCYF
Rep Michael Chippendale, Lobbyist Nicholas Alahverdian, and Rep. Doreen Costa at the Rhode Island State House Press Conference on DCYF

Nicholas Alahverdian, a former legislative aide for the Rhode Island House of Representatives hired at the age of 14, has been fighting for DCYF reform since 2002. Alahverdian suffered torture, abuse, and negligence in the infamous night-to-night program at the same time he worked for the state government. 

When legislators and the media began to act and report on the abuse Alahverdian was suffering, he was exiled by Family Court Chief Judge Jeremiah S. Jeremiah and Governor Donald L. Carcieri to two facilities — Manatee Palms in Florida and Boys Town Residential Treatment Center in Nebraska — which were later closed by their own states for torture, abuse, and neglect. Thought that period of time, Alahverdian was allowed to contact no one at all — lawyers, the courts, DCYF social workers, the police.

Alahverdian later sued his abusers in federal court in Rhode Island, led an attempted state and federal legislative blitz to attempt to enhance DCYF policies and practices, and studied comparative literature at Harvard University. 

###

Contact: Nicholas Alahverdian
+1 401 472 4955
nalahverdian@gmail.com
nicholasalahverdian.com

Resources: 

T.J. Wright Killing: http://www.nbcnews.com/id/29263056/ns/us_news-crime_and_courts/t/man-gets-life-fatal-beating-over-spilt-milk/#.W8fjzS2ZORs

Nicholas Alahverdian Biography: https://www.nicholasalahverdian.com/nicholas-alahverdian-biography/

Brief Nicholas Alahverdian biographical video (2011): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnYCsZg-FdY

2011 WPRI 12 Story on Nicholas Alahverdian story and legislation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VTufox9v7to

2002 Providence Journal Column by Bob Kerr- https://www.nicholasalahverdian.com/posts/posts-14611102483-a-survivor-tells-the-story-of-kid-dumping/ 

2011 Providence Journal Column by Bob Kerr- https://www.nicholasalahverdian.com/nicholas-alahverdian/nicholas-alahverdian-he-knows-the-ri-system-inside-and-out/

Providence Journal op-ed 2017 – http://www.providencejournal.com/opinion/20170407/nicholas-alahverdian-dcyf-workers-need-help-to-protect-children

Time to go, Raimondo: Nicholas Alahverdian releases 2018 endorsements for upcoming November election

It’s that time again. And Gina Raimondo’s days before losing the election are numbered.

The signs and pins come out.

Your door is knocked upon by seemingly friendly and overexcited volunteers.

You’re caught off guard by the random candidates you’ve seen on tv standing on line at Dunkin’ Donuts (we can still call it that for the time being, right?).

It’s election season. Continue reading Time to go, Raimondo: Nicholas Alahverdian releases 2018 endorsements for upcoming November election

Press Release: Rhode Island DCYF expert calls for House and Senate review of long-delayed legislation

Nicholas Alahverdian legislation would satisfy federal concerns

Continue reading Press Release: Rhode Island DCYF expert calls for House and Senate review of long-delayed legislation

DCYF Report: Recurrent, vile and ominous abuse findings. Again.

Mattiello and Raimondo need to go. Here’s why.

By Nicholas Alahverdian
nicholasalahverdian.com

I have, in collaboration with current and former Representatives Bob DaSilva, Raymond Hull, Michael Marcello, Anastasia Williams and multitudinous others, drafted and submitted bills to ameliorate the seemingly irremediable Rhode Island Department of Children, Youth and Families (DCYF). We have introduced this legislation year after year. Each bill, year after year, has been held for further study.

Interestingly enough, when I was actively lobbying for this legislation in my 2011 DCYF reform blitz, we had over 40 co-sponsors in the House. Think about that for a second. The House of Representatives has 75 members. There were forty co-sponsors. If those bills were transmitted from committee to the floor for a vote, they would have passed with flying colors. Continue reading DCYF Report: Recurrent, vile and ominous abuse findings. Again.

Why are so few children being adopted? | Nicholas Alahverdian

Adapting is the solution to a successful adoption

Author: Nicholas Alahverdian

Adopted children are very rare — especially older children. In my view, couples looking to adopt want a fresh start with a young baby — they don’t want to inherit the potentially copious amount of problems that a child or adolescent who has already been scarred by the system may bring. Continue reading Why are so few children being adopted? | Nicholas Alahverdian

The Public Current – Nicholas Alahverdian Podcast 2011 | Nicholas Alahverdian

Nicholas Alahverdian, Harvard
Harvard scholar Nicholas Alahverdian

From the archive: Nicholas Alahverdian twice tried his hand at podcasting. His first attempt – a 2011 podcast from NexusGovernment on legislative issues facing the people of . Continue reading The Public Current – Nicholas Alahverdian Podcast 2011 | Nicholas Alahverdian

A twist of fate for Will DeVogue / William Arena

Like many people, I was touched to learn of William Arena’s (a/k/a Will DeVogue) story of the search for his dad. I learned of his story from WJAR NBC 10’s RJ Heim, who did a piece on DeVogue.

Nicholas Alahverdian, Will Devogue
Nicholas Alahverdian and Will Devogue

William Arena/DeVogue thought Bob Dylan was his father and had a garrulous conjecture along with a few serendipitous details about why he surmised these elements united to confirm his theory. A fan and amateur Dylan scholar, I reached out to him and we had a few heartfelt discussions about adoption and foster care, characteristics that we share since I grew up in DCYF care myself and didn’t have a particularly pleasant experience.

I’m also a fan of Bob Dylan’s music and think that he’s had a profound impact on the arts, music, and society – perhaps the most profound impact of the 20th century. I found it to be tremendously interesting to get involved with what could be a great discovery. I was hoping that everything was exactly the way that it seemed.

Nicholas Alahverdian
Nicholas Alahverdian, Will DeVogue, and others

William explained how he had made a few queries to Dylan’s manager, Jeff Rosen. I helped to facilitate some communication with my connections at Harvard University. I involved lawyers, scholars, musicians, even Warhol superstar Ultra Violet, to try to find some veracity to this theory that William’s mother Tina DeVogue (also known as Anita Voyes) knew Bob Dylan — not even yet piercing the veil of whether or not Dylan could conceivably be Arena’s father.

He was told that his father was Gene Michaels, another Greenwich Village folksinger. But a DNA test with a half-sibling refuted that speculation.

Because I, like so many, were captivated by Arena’s story, I invested personal resources and money in trying to get some sort of documentary-type production off the ground to at least find out the truth. I remember bringing him to the Rhode Island Department of Health to spend the $25 or so to obtain his birth certificate — just to see who was listed in the “father” box. It was Michaels.

A big part of me wanted Dylan to be his dad because, admittedly, that would be a rather fascinating addition to the citizenry of Rhode Island; a man who was the posterity of the greatest singer and songwriter to have lived. It would also add to Dylan’s numerous and riveting Rhode Island connections.

I assembled my friends and colleagues, including website developers, attorneys, journalists, writers, Harvard-affiliated sound engineers and Cambridge cinematographers.

Nicholas Alahverdian
Nicholas Alahverdian

We rented and paid for a conference room at The Liberty Hotel and a suite for William DeVogue / William Arena, his kids, and his girlfriend. The team of experts met to get things moving so we could get the project off the ground as soon as possible.

I had a meeting, coincidentally on the day of of Dylan’s September 11, 2012 release of Tempest, at the Massachusetts State House with a legal team to discuss tax credits and assess the legal parameters for making a film that would put the potential posterity of an amazing poet in the limelight. I even mentioned DeVogue and the project during a personal appearance on WPRO’s The Buddy Cianci Show.

Nicholas Alahverdian, Buddy Cianci, Vincent Cianci, Vincent A. Cianci Jr., Providence
Vincent A. “Buddy” Cianci, Jr., host of WPRO’s The Buddy Cianci Show and former longtime Mayor of Providence, R.I.

But with every passing day, Will’s demands became insurmountable. Nothing was ever enough. He was penurious, to say the least, and his odd jobs as a house painter around Portsmouth and the East Bay were making it difficult for him to survive.

I felt sad for Will. But there was very little I could do to ameliorate his circumstance. I never expect to discover why Will was so intent on proving why Dylan is his dad, and nor do I care. I have my suspicions. But I know what his mother said, and I have proof of that conversation.

I know who his father might be. I suppose the principal intention in writing this essay is to process the impact that he had on me as a wearisome Pierrot peddling a half-baked assumption. If it was a personal issue, why go public at all? I began very quickly to regret being involved.

After a while, I stopped taking his calls. I shut him off completely. He was very overwhelming and demanding. He acted with such an air of entitlement that it was incredibly arduous to cope with his rigorous demands. I was doing this pro bono. I was running a full time media campaign against DCYF for what I had suffered as a youth.

I was in the middle of two federal lawsuits. DeVogue’s obsessive insistence on absorbing every minute of my time was intolerable. Will’s unhealthy obsession with attempting to prove that Dylan might be his father was a catastrophic cadger in his life. It was quickly becoming a similar plight for me. I had to snuff out his swarthy overtone and savage attitude.

It was a healthy decision to part with Will and The DeVogue Project. He finally got the hint. He even wished me well.

Nicholas Alahverdian, William DeVogue, William Arena

What follows below is a 2012 Providence Journal article by my longtime friend Bob Kerr.

A twist of fate in search for dad

Bob Kerr ProJo, Nicholas Alahverdian
Bob Kerr

By Bob Kerr

In trying to put the story of his earliest days together, William Arena turns the pages of a book of iconic photographs from Life magazine. There is, as there has to be, a photo of Bob Dylan, walking a New York street with a girlfriend. That was a recurring image in the ’60s — Dylan, slightly hunched, leaning close to his sweetie on a city street. Continue reading A twist of fate for Will DeVogue / William Arena

Nicholas Alahverdian: Carnegie and Wealth

BY Nicholas Alahverdian 

Andrew Carnegie was the epitome of a philanthropist. The Wealth essay (also known as “The Gospel of Wealth”) is reminiscent of the belief that it is ethically advantageous to be poor in a rich nation than it is to be rich in a poor nation. Every age has faced the quarrel of wealth distribution, and the associated decisiveness is no small task to handle. From an ethical perspective, it is imperative that those who are more fortunate assist those in need. Continue reading Nicholas Alahverdian: Carnegie and Wealth

Speech on Armenian Genocide | Nicholas Alahverdian

Nicholas Alahverdian

Your honor the Mayor, City Commissioners, Mr. City Manager, Madam Clerk, ladies and gentlemen:

I’m Nicholas Alahverdian and I am honored to appear before our dynamic mayor and distinguished commissioners once again. I would, for the last time, like to address the events of 1915. From the bottom of my heart, I want to express my gratitude for the proclamation of April 24, 2015 as “Armenian Centennial Remembrance Day”.

Over the past week, I have had the opportunity to reflect, pray, and ponder. My thoughts and prayers have been with those that were slaughtered, killed, or orphaned.

Nicholas Alahverdian, Providence, Rhode Island
Nicholas Alahverdian

During my previous two visits before this honorable commission and your honor the mayor, I appeared here as an impassioned and unlikely descendant of the survivors of this blood-curdling nightmare. 

But now, after much reflection and contemplation, I have come to the conclusion that now – more than ever – we must be cognizant of America’s democratic legacy.

By virtue of April 24th being called, “Centennial Remembrance Day”, I have learned a valuable lesson that I feel is worthy to be shared. 

Our democratic legacy is at risk more than ever. We see equality of Americans at more risk than ever. Deplorable organizations like ISIS and al-qaeda threaten our safety. They threaten our freedom. They threaten our liberty. And we must defend our liberty.

We must not feed the fire of war

That is why we must not feed the fire of war. We must not dwell on the obsession of evil and exacting revenge – but we must insist on defending the future – starting with our families and our neighborhoods – our communities and our churches – and we start right here, in our great city.

It is even seen on is on the great seal of the United States- The eagle holds an olive branch – symbolic of peace – and arrows – symbolic of protection and defense. Which way does the eagle’s head face?

Towards the talons clasping the olive branches. But we have our arrows for times of need.

The Founding Fathers built a strong democratic legacy – a legacy can never forget.

A legacy that leaves with us a great experiment that we see in action – here – right at this very moment. 

From small beginnings, great things come to pass. We declared our independence in a bold fashion.

We formed a Constitution.

We waved the banner of freedom – and those colors of liberty stand as a testament to all those blessed to live in this country. 

And this freedom – this liberty – does not apply just to those born here. All women and men are created equal.

Nicholas Alahverdian, RI, press conference
Nicholas Alahverdian

Our dynamism is what emboldens us

Whether we are citizens of this nation by birth, whether our ancestors braved the waters of the Atlantic on the Mayflower, or whether we just moved to this week – a city known around the globe for dynamism and innovation – last week, we are all Americans. 

And that, from what I can perceive, is what embodies this city – that is what emboldens us, with unique community initiatives right here in our own city.

We are immigrants. We are citizens by birth. We are here to let our dreams come to pass – but above all – we are Americans.
America is still that great experiment. 

We are still defending the right to govern ourselves. We are still kindling the flame of the freedom born in the hearts of our founding fathers.

We are creating new beginnings every day. Kenyans, Japanese, Chinese, German, Turkish, Armenian, Greek, Irish, Italian – and too many more to name – we are creating new beginnings. 

We are welcoming more and more people to participate in the greatest demonstration of democracy that the world has ever seen – and that flame in our hearts will never be extinguished.

Yes there have been wars. Yes there has been blood shed.

But we move forward. And we stand united to progress in an age to prosper.

And what better place to do that than our great city? 

Welcome them here, to our great inheritance. Welcome them here to build a new life, to make a new opportunity for their families.

No matter our heritage, no matter our religious conviction, no matter our nationality – we are – above all – Americans. 

Gratitude

And it is in the American spirit that I wish to express gratitude for Armenian Centennial Remembrance Day. We warn those who threaten our democracy – they understand us perfectly. We try to reach out and understand – but no, they understand us perfectly. 

We will not stand for intolerance, invasion, or ethnocentrism. They are anarchists – that is the role that they are determined to play and so it is our duty to play ours – the Americans that stop the anarchists.

To all else, we say remember this: you are welcome here.  Welcome to America. 

Let us celebrate that great spirit of freedom right here. No more wars. No more. Let’s make this place the home of those who harness the power of peace and say to all of our brothers and sisters: Welcome to our great city. 

About Nicholas Alahverdian

Nicholas Alahverdian is a Harvard-educated scholar and political activist. As an adolescent, Nicholas survived torture and abuse inflicted upon him by the Rhode Island government under the direct orders of a chief judge and a governor following his political activism against them while Alahverdian was an employee of the Rhode Island House of Representatives.

Nicholas was sent to two facilities far from New England that had extensive records of torture, abuse, and negligence. He was forced to remain in these abusive facilities until his 18th birthday and was not allowed to contact anyone, go to school, or prepare for adulthood. Alahverdian survived the torture, sued his abusers, settled in court, and studied at Harvard University.

The primary scholarly focus of Nicholas Alahverdian is the intersection of philology, rhetoric, and politics. He has been featured in The Providence Journal, NPR, BBC, NBC, CBS, and ABC News as well as The Buddy Cianci Show, The Boston Globe and countless other media entities.

Nicholas Alahverdian, Harvard

About Nicholas Alahverdian

Nicholas Alahverdian, Seamus Heaney, Nobel Prize, Harvard
Seamus Heaney and Nicholas Alahverdian

Visit https://www.nicholasalahverdian.com/

Nicholas Alahverdian is a Harvard-educated scholar and political activist. As an adolescent, Nicholas survived torture and abuse inflicted upon him by the Rhode Island government under the direct orders of a chief judge and a governor following his political activism against them while Alahverdian was an employee of the Rhode Island House of Representatives.

Nicholas Alahverdian, Providence, https://www.nicholasalahverdian.com
Nicholas Alahverdian

Nicholas was sent to two facilities far from New England that had extensive records of torture, abuse, and negligence. He was forced to remain in these abusive facilities until his 18th birthday and was not allowed to contact anyone, go to school, or prepare for adulthood.

Alahverdian survived the torture, sued his abusers, settled in court, and studied at Harvard University.

The primary scholarly focus of Nicholas Alahverdian is the intersection of philology, rhetoric, and politics. He has been featured in The Providence Journal, NPR, BBC, NBC, CBS, and ABC News as well as The Buddy Cianci Show, The Boston Globe and countless other media entities.